Categories: Chrome OSChromebooksChromeboxTips & Tricks

Chromebook How-To: Enabling Night Mode

For many of you, this feature isn’t new and likely you’ve been using it for months now. However, for the countless who christened a new Chromebook over the holiday season, we wanted to share the steps on how to enable “Night Mode” or as Chrome OS calls it, the “Night Light.”

I like it. Has a nice cozy feel to it.

Anyway, onward and upward. For those of you not familiar, Night Mode is simply a display setting for devices that adjust the color emitted from the screen to make reading and viewing easier on the eyes in low light or when you are using your device for extended periods of time.

Many of you may be familiar with this feature on mobile devices especially if you are an iOS user. “Night Shift”, as Apple calls it, was introduced in early 2016 and since that time many third-party apps and extensions have launched to duplicate night mode on various operating systems.

Prior to that, f.lux software was the primary way to adjust color temperature on your display. Problem was, it didn’t work for Chrome OS. Hence the aforementioned, third-party applications.

Last year, the Chrome OS team started tinkering with a “Night Light” for Chromebooks and slowly but surely, it made its way to the Stable channel of Chrome OS. Despite being a much-desired feature by many users, the Night Light is still hidden behind a “flag” so below are the steps to enable night mode and what you can do with it after you have.

Enable Night Light

We can get the basics out of the way first. Obviously, you will want to have your Chromebook or Chromebox powered on and connected to a network. From there, these steps will only take you a couple of minutes.

  1. type chrome://flags in the url bar (Omnibox)
  2. In the search bar at the top of the page, (yeah, that’s a new feature too) type “night light”
  3. To the right of the “Enable Night Light” flag, click enable.
  4. Click the restart button at the bottom of the page. (this will restart the browser, not the device)

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That’s it. Now you should see the Night Light icon in the system tray in the bottom right corner of your screen between the help and lock icons. Go ahead and give it a try. When you click it, you should see your display shift to a soft, yellowish hue.

If a little more customization is your style, there’s more you can do with your new-found feature. Head to the settings menu either through the system tray or by typing chrome://settings in the url bar. Whichever you prefer.

Scroll down to displays under the device category and give it a click. You should see some new setting that will allow you to adjust the color temperature to your liking as well as set a timer for the Night Light to do its thing automatically.

With so many new users coming to Chrome OS, this is one of those features that many will benefit from in numerous use-cases. Again, I don’t know why the Night Light hasn’t become a standard feature but it’s good to know that it’s there if you need it.

Hope this helps. Looking for more tips? Drop a comment below and let us know what kind of Chromebook how-tos you’d like to see here on Chrome Unboxed and we’ll do our best to make it happen.

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Gabriel Brangers

Lover of all things coffee. Foodie for life. Passionate drummer, hobby guitar player, Web designer and proud Army Veteran. I have come to drink coffee and tell the world of all things Chrome. "Whatever you do, Carpe the heck out of that Diem" - Roman poet, Horace. Slightly paraphrased.

View Comments

  • Thanks for pointing this out. I really don't like the default setting, which is too yellow for my taste. However, I've always found the display of my HP Chromebook 13 G1 a little bit too blue, so this lets me fine tune it to my taste, putting the slider directly over the "oo" in Cooler. Hooray!

    I access settings frequently, and one of my favorite apps is called Settings Button, available at the Chrome Web Store :

    I'm slightly OCD about saving time and keystrokes, so with the Settings Button app, all I have to do is tap the Search key, type "set" then hit the enter key — 5 keystrokes as opposed to 18 for chrome://settings .

  • Thanks a lot for this information. This is great, I really missed this feature. Up to now I could find some apps that did the same in an awkward way, leaving the top bar in clear white. BTW works well on Acer R11 beta channel.

  • I've been gratefully using it for a couple of months now (on Beta), but it never seems to automatically turn on and off even though I have it set it to run from Sunset to Sunrise. :(

    • Mine comes on and off at random times... sometimes exactly when I've set it (custom times) and sometimes in the middle of the afternoon. Either way, I love the feature and don't mind a bug here and there, as its usefulness far outweighs that minor annoyance.

    • I'm on Dev, used to have that problem but it's slowly gone away, so fixes might be coming down the line.

  • Thanks for the tip, I love this feature on my iPhone and gonna get it activated on my 2017 Acer Chromebook 15.

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